February 10, 2017 | Posted by James McMahon
Why do institutions grow? Despite nearly a century of scientific effort, there remains little consensus on this topic. This paper offers a new approach that focuses on energy consumption. A systematic relation exists between institution size and energy consumption per capita: as energy consumption increases, institutions become larger. I hypothesize that this relation results from the interplay between technological scale and human biological limitations. I also show how a simple stochastic model can be used to link energy consumption with firm dynamics.
Energy and Institution Size
Fix, Blair. (2017). PLoS ONE. Vol. 12. No. 2. 8 February. pp. 1-22.
PLoS ONE page / Download PDF / Download Data